With over 275 million French speakers worldwide, there's never been a better time to dive into the rich world of French culture, food and, of course, language.
I learned a decent amount of French while living in Tunisia for a short-term work contract. But I’ve been wanting to beef up my fluency ever since. I recently heard about the online language software developed by Rocket Languages. And decided there was no better time than the present.
Rocket Languages’ French course is called Rocket French. And it promises to transform your “Oh là là…” into an “Ah oui!” in no time. But does it really deliver?
In this [hopefully] fun and informative Rocket Languages French review, we'll explore the ins and outs of Rocket French to see if it can help you conquer the notoriously tricky French accent that has left many English speakers tongue-tied.
So, grab a croissant and a glass of Bordeaux as we dive into the world of French language learning with Rocket French – where wit, humor, and a touch of je ne sais quoi await you. Allons-y!
- Balanced lessons designed to help students become well-rounded French speakers
- Survival Kit Phrases for real-life conversations
- Leaderboard rankings and learning statistics
- Benchmark Test for personalized assessment
- Alignment with CEFR and study tool
- Easily save words, phrases, or sentences
- Rocket Recommends for additional resources
- Supportive community forum
- Active learning study aids
- 6-day risk-free trial with generous refund policy
- Dual emphasis of listening comprehension and grammatical mastery covers all aspects of the language for speedy progress
- Interactive lessons engage learners and put you in the driver’s seat
- Speech recognition technology to effectively refine your French accent
- Mobile app for practice anytime, anywhere
- Helps identify strengths and weaknesses
- Lifetime access to all course materials
- Community forum for students to support each other
- Seamlessly syncs progress across all devices
- Light on engaging visual aids, may be an obstacle for visual learners
- Limited content for very advanced learners (C1/C2 levels)
- Voice recognition software sometimes struggles with French homophones
Best for: A wide range of learners, from beginners to intermediate students looking to boost their conversation skills and grammar. The self-paced and interactive design makes it great for those who prefer learning independently and for busy professionals needing flexibility. Plus, the course is tailored for students aiming for CEFR certification, providing all the necessary tools to achieve various proficiency levels.
Cost: A one-time fee for lifetime access is between $100 – $250, based on how many levels you buy. Or, you can pay for a month-to-month package at about $50 per month. You can also try Rocket French in a free, 6-day trial.
Overall: Rocket French offers a well-rounded learning experience. Combining immersive audio lessons with informative language and culture lessons. You’ll learn to master grammar, vocabulary, conversation skills. And benefit from additional features like survival phrases and personalized assessments. With a focus on both essential language components and practical conversation, Rocket French stands out among online courses. Considering the quality and value for money, Rocket French is an exceptional choice in the language learning world. With a free trial and 60-day refund period, there's no reason not to give it a try.
What is Rocket French?
Author’s own picture, building in La Marsa, Tunis, Tunisia
Rocket French is a pioneering online course developed by Rocket Languages, a well-known provider of language learning courses. The course has garnered a lot of popularity among learners. And it's played a significant role in establishing Rocket Languages as a leading provider for language learning.
It’s designed to be user-friendly and convenient, catering to both beginners and advanced learners. With comprehensive course material, including grammar, vocabulary, culture, and conversation skills, you can expect to gain a well-rounded understanding of the French language.
Rocket French has been successful in helping thousands of students achieve conversational fluency in French through its innovative language learning techniques, state-of-the-art technology, and interactive tools. Many past students have reported success. Which is a testament to the platform's effectiveness and ability to make learning exciting and dynamic.
Students can access the platform via their web browser or the Rocket Languages mobile app. This is available on both iOS and Android devices. The app allows students to access the platform's resources on the go and syncs progress to make it easy to switch between the app and the browser.
How does Rocket French work?
Here are some of the standout features that contribute to the success of Rocket French:
- Interactive Audio Lessons which let you listen to native French speakers and repeat phrases, ensuring that you develop proper pronunciation and conversational skills.
- Interactive Exercises that encourage you to practice reading, writing, speaking, and listening in French, covering all aspects of language acquisition.
- Language & Culture Lessons provide valuable insights into traditions, history, customs, and tourist sites, enriching your understanding of French-speaking countries.
- Survival Kit Phrases, a set of crucial everyday phrases. Incorporating these phrases throughout the learning journey will significantly enhance your vocabulary and practical language skills.
- Extra Tools to support learners, such as leaderboard rankings, a benchmark test, Rocket CEFR certification, saved notes, saved vocabulary, Rocket Recommends, and a forum for discussion and collaboration.
Rocket Languages’ French course is categorized according to the following three proficiency levels:
|Lessons & Assessments
|Length of Content
|A1 – A2
|9 Modules, 74 Lesson Blocks
|27 hrs 53 min
|A2 – B1
|8 Modules, 69 Lesson Blocks
|27 hrs 9 min
|B1 – B2
|8 Modules, 67 Lesson Blocks
|27 hrs 31 min
|7 Chapters, 40 Lessons
|11 hrs 35min
*Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR)
Rocket Languages offers a “French Travelogues” package at an additional cost. In these, you ‘accompany' the hosts to exciting locations in France while meeting interesting characters and tackling everyday situations. The 15 minute audio clips help you practice your French by ordering food at a café, asking for directions, or even chatting with locals. They're designed to be entertaining and super helpful in preparing you for your big trip to a French-speaking destination.
What a lesson is like on Rocket French
An Interactive Audio Lesson from the first Module of Level 1
A Rocket French lasts about 25 minutes and includes audio lessons, quizzes, and games.
You start by listening to a conversation in French, followed by a slower version of the same dialogue. Then, the lesson provides vocabulary words and phrases to memorize. Finally, you get exercises on pronunciation, grammar, and usage. After completing a lesson, you can earn badges and points to track your progress.
Rocket French offers two main types of lessons: Interactive Audio Lessons and Language & Culture Lessons. Both incorporate various activities, quizzes, practical situations, and feedback to reinforce learning and self-assessment. Each of the three Levels is broken up into seven Modules. Each Module has about four lessons of Interactive Audio Lessons and four lessons of Language & Culture Lessons.
Interactive Audio Lessons: Designed to help students fine-tune their listening skills in the French language with the help of native dialogue and friendly English-language hosts. Focusing on pronunciation, vocabulary, and useful phrases, these audio-focused lessons are perfect for on-the-go learning, allowing for flexibility and convenience.
Language & Culture Lessons: These lessons teach the grammatical and syntax building blocks of the French language. Each lesson ends with a discussion of cultural and social background for vocabulary related to real-life situations, providing a well-rounded learning experience.
Apart from the main lessons, Rocket French also includes themed lists of Survival Kit Phrases for each level. These phrases help students bulk up their vocabulary in specific topics, such as travel, dining, or meeting new people. Students can easily add these new vocabulary words and phrases to their saved vocabulary list.
What is the method behind Rocket French?
Rocket French, developed by Rocket Languages, adopts a practical approach to teaching, focusing on essential vocabulary and grammar. It combines interactive audio lessons with grammar and language exercises, creating a comprehensive learning experience suitable for both beginners and intermediates. This teaching methodology promotes active participation and interactive learning, ideal for those wanting to practice and learn French at home.
Aiming to mimic an immersive learning environment, Rocket French builds up grammar skills to ensure learners use their conversational abilities correctly. The adaptive learning feature helps improve pronunciation by providing feedback and corrections.
Access to native French speakers and cutting-edge voice recognition software further assists learners in developing an authentic French accent. This friendly, informative, and conversational approach supports and engages learners throughout their language journey.
How I reviewed Rocket French
As an intermediate French speaker who picked up the language while working in Tunisia, I was eager to see how this course could help me improve. I started with the trial version, but after seeing its potential, I sprang for the paid version to test out the full capabilities of the course. I used it intensively for about a week, exploring various aspects of the program.
I began my review with the Benchmark test, which consists of 100 questions that get harder as you progress. After getting three answers wrong, the test stopped and gave me an overall score out of 100.
I ended up getting through 79 of the 100 questions, which is about right for my level of fluency in French (around B1)
To get a feel for the content, I went through several lessons at each of the three Levels and tried all types of lessons available: Interactive Audio Lessons, Language & Culture Lessons, and Survival Kit Phrases. This allowed me to experience the different teaching approaches and materials used in the course.
I also made sure to go through all the study resources attached to each Interactive Audio Lesson. I'll detail what those looked like below in the “Features” section, if you're curious.
Remember that you can always study with Rocket French on the Rocket Languages mobile app. I tended to listen to the audio lessons with the app during my commute and while doing chores around the house.
Rocket French Pros
What is it about Rocket French that students love so much? Here are some of its most attractive qualities:
Interactive Audio Lessons
One of the key strengths of Rocket French is its interactive audio lessons. While there's a strong emphasis on developing French listening comprehension, the “interactive” component ensures you stay engaged. Beyond the gaps in the approximately 25-minute audios to repeat phrases and words, the “Play it!” section connected to the audio lesson keeps you actively involved. The audio lessons are perfect for listening via the app while on-the-go, making language learning convenient and flexible.
Best of Both Worlds
Rocket French strikes an excellent balance between audio lessons and Language & Culture Lessons. The audio lessons are informative, engaging, and great for taking on-the-go, while the Language & Culture Lessons ensure you understand the mechanics of the language. This comprehensive approach helps you develop a well-rounded understanding of French, from pronunciation and vocabulary to grammar and cultural aspects.
Rocket Record, Rocket Language's voice recognition software developed in partnership with Google Web Speech API, is nothing short of incredible. It's especially useful for an online language course, helping you fine-tune your French accent—a notoriously difficult task for English speakers. I tested the language software by saying a completely different French phrase than asked, and it correctly understood me (and thus awarded me a low score), showcasing its accuracy.
My attempt to trick Rocket Record by asking for another baguette was rewarded with a low 40% accent score for the sentence I was supposed to say
Easy, Medium, or Hard?
A standout feature of Rocket French is the option to rate how easy, medium, or hard each French phrase or word is for you to remember. This personalized approach makes it easy to identify words and phrases you struggle with and those you don't need to focus on as much, ensuring efficient language learning.
The Community Forum
Learning a language is inherently social, and Rocket Languages ensures you have access to fellow learners by providing a community forum. This platform allows you to ask and answer questions, exchange experiences, and connect with other students, creating a supportive and interactive learning environment.
The well-designed Rocket Languages app syncs your progress across all your devices, allowing for seamless language learning on-the-go. It's ideal for listening to audio lessons while commuting or traveling, although repeating words and phrases in public might be a bit challenging. Nonetheless, the app's convenience and functionality make it an excellent resource for busy learners.
Rocket French Cons
After spending some time with Rocket French, I must admit it took me a while to think of the downsides of using this language learning software. However, there are a few cons worth mentioning:
Lacks an Engaging Visual Component
One potential drawback of Rocket French is the lack of engaging visuals. The course lessons contain no videos and almost no pictures. If you're a visual learner who needs images or video content to stay engaged, this may be an obstacle for you. While the audio lessons and written materials are comprehensive, adding more visuals could enhance the overall learning experience.
May Not Be Appropriate for Advanced Learners Beyond CEFR B2
Rocket French aims to bring its students up to a B2 level, meaning that it doesn't include content at the C1 or C2 level. While this is technically a limitation, it's important to remember that an online learning course catering to advanced levels might be challenging to create. The technical definition of B2 is communicating easily and spontaneously with a native speaker, which is arguably the primary goal of any French student.
Benchmark Test Has Room for Growth
There's room for improvement in the Benchmark test. Instead of giving you a set of questions taken from each audio lesson's attached “quiz” and assigning you a score based on how many of the 100 questions you got through, Rocket Languages should consider making it a more comprehensive assessment. A test that rates you on the CEFR scale based on your knowledge of vocabulary and grammatical structures and tells you which Rocket French level and Module to start at would be more beneficial.
French Challenges Rocket Record
As I mentioned earlier, Rocket Record is included as a pro. However, it's worth noting that even though it's incredibly impressive as a piece of software, it does have limitations for French. Many French words sound similar (e.g., trois, froid, croix), and the software sometimes struggles to distinguish similar-sounding words from each other. It performs much better with phrases and full sentences, but this is something to be aware of when using Rocket Record. Also, I found that it didn't work with my Microsoft Edge browser (potentially because of my privacy settings?), but I was able to get it to work with Chrome.
Who is Rocket French for?
Rocket French is suitable for a variety of learners, including:
- Beginners: With comprehensive lessons that start from the basics, Rocket French is ideal for those who are new to the language. The course introduces essential vocabulary, grammar, and pronunciation exercises to build a strong foundation.
- Intermediate Learners: The course offers plenty of advanced content aimed at improving conversational skills and refining grammar knowledge, making it perfect for intermediate learners.
- Self-Learners: Rocket French's self-paced structure and interactive approach make it an excellent choice for independent learners who prefer studying at their own pace.
- Busy Professionals: The mobile app and audio lessons allow for flexible learning on-the-go, catering to professionals with tight schedules.
- CEFR Accreditation Study: Rocket French is designed to cater to the interests of students looking for CEFR certification. The course uses vocabulary, grammar, pronunciation exercises, and conversational drills to achieve the goals of different levels of the CEFR framework.
How much does Rocket French cost?
Rocket French offers a range of pricing plans to suit different budgets and learning needs. The platform's pricing plans range from buying a single level to buying all three levels plus Rocket French’s “Travelogues.”
The pricing options are a bit complicated. So I put together this table to give you a better idea of the pricing:
|6-Month Payment Plan*
|Any Single Level of Rocket French
|Rocket French 1 & 2
|Rocket French 1, 2 & 3
|$47 / month
|French Travelogues Package
When you check the prices for Rocket French, the coupon code “ROCKETDEAL” was automatically added. It gives you anywhere from 17% – 42% off on the various packages — the prices in the chart reflect the deal, because the deal was always offered to me. For that reason, the prices above reflect the effective price of each package with the standard ROCKETDEAL coupon code already included. The actual base price is much higher, but you would have to actively delete any coupon code that will already be in place, which just seems silly.
When you sign up for a trial, they also offer you a code that offers big savings. After a quick web search, though, I found a few other coupon codes that give even bigger savings (60% off the base price for every package, in one case!).
Is Rocket French free?
Rocket French provides a generous 6-day free trial, allowing you to get a taste of what the course has to offer before committing to a purchase. During this trial period, you'll have access to a selection of lessons from each level:
- Level 1: You can explore 7 lessons, which include 2 hours and 38 minutes of audio content from both interactive audio lessons and Language & Culture lessons.
- Level 2: The trial offers 2 lessons with 49 minutes of audio content, focusing on interactive audio lessons.
- Level 3: Similar to Level 2, you'll have access to 2 lessons with 49 minutes of audio content, again centered around interactive audio lessons.
While the free trial gives you a glimpse into the various levels and types of lessons available in Rocket French, there are some limitations. For instance, you won't have access to Rocket Certification or Rocket Recommends during the trial period. These features are exclusive to the full version of the course, providing additional tools and resources for learners.
Rocket French Refund
If you buy one of the Rocket French lifetime access packages, you are guaranteed a refund within 60 days of purchase — no questions asked!
Just email firstname.lastname@example.org that you want a refund, making sure to include your receipt number. They promise to process your refund within two working days, though it can take up to five days to see the refund on your statement.
If you choose the six-month subscription plan, you will not be able to get a refund. Instead, Rocket French allows you to cancel your next monthly payment in this case.
Features of Rocket French
Rocket French provides combination lessons that target both listening comprehension and French grammar. These ensure you develop as a well-rounded French speaker.
Survival Kit Phrases help you quickly build your confidence in real-life conversations.
Rocket French also gamifies the learning experience through leaderboard rankings and statistics. This encourages healthy competition, motivates you to stay consistent, and helps track your progress.
The Benchmark Test is a personalized assessment tool that evaluates your current French proficiency. It consists of 100 questions and helps identify strengths and weaknesses.
Rocket French's content is aligned with the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) for languages. Plus, it has a CEFR study tool that allows you to assess your progress on the CEFR scale.
One of my favorite features was the ability to easily save almost any word, phrase, or sentence that I came across on Rocket French. This helps you review and reinforce your learning at any time.
Rocket Recommends provides personalized suggestions for additional resources and tools to enhance your learning experience and complement the course content.
The community forum encourages discussion and collaboration among learners, fostering a supportive learning environment.
Rocket French offers various active learning study aids that accompany lessons throughout every Levels to reinforce your language skills and ensure a well-rounded learning experience:
- Play It: Lets you review the dialogue central to the lesson by taking the place of one or both parts of the conversation, using Rocket Record voice recognition software to practice having a conversation in a pressure-free environment
- Lesson Vocabulary: Practice key phrases and words from the lesson
- Expert Tips: Such as accepting corrections from natives and asking for tips to speak better
- Flashcards: To better review lesson vocabulary
- Hear it! Say it!: Recognize vocabulary from the lesson spoken by a native, and repeat it using Rocket Record voice, aiming for a 100% score on your accent
- Write it!: Similar to “Hear it! Say it!,” but you write instead
- Know it!: Given the written French word or phrase, speak it into the mic. Rocket Record will assess whether you have said the correct word(s) with the correct accent
- Quiz: Multiple choice questions about vocab and/or grammar related to the lesson
The flashcards tool
The Write It! study resource
What languages can you learn with Rocket French?
As the name suggests, French is the only language you can learn with Rocket French. But if you like the way Rocket French works and want to learn another language, Rocket Languages offers 11 other foreign languages (not including two English courses).
The pricing is going to vary with the different languages, though, so heads up!
Alternatives to Rocket French
There are a number of online French learning websites available, and it can be difficult to know which one is the best fit for your needs. Here is a comparison of Rocket French to other popular online French learning websites:
Rosetta Stone French vs Rocket French
Rosetta Stone is well-known for its immersive approach to language learning, focusing on context and images to teach vocabulary and grammar. While this method can be engaging, it might not suit learners who prefer explicit explanations and a structured curriculum.
On the other hand, Rocket French offers comprehensive lessons that combine interactive audio lessons with Language & Culture lessons, providing a more structured learning experience. It also includes a range of study aids and community support, which Rosetta Stone lacks.
If you prefer an immersive learning experience without explicit grammar explanations, Rosetta Stone might be a better fit. However, if you're looking for a more structured and comprehensive approach, Rocket French is an excellent choice.
Duolingo vs Rocket French
Duolingo is a popular and free language learning app that gamifies the learning process, making it fun and engaging. However, Duolingo primarily focuses on vocabulary and basic grammar, which might not be sufficient for learners seeking more in-depth knowledge and conversational practice.
Rocket French, while not free, offers a more comprehensive learning experience. It combines interactive audio lessons, Language & Culture lessons, and practical survival phrases, ensuring a well-rounded learning experience.
So while Duolingo is great if you're looking for a free and casual way to learn French, you may not learn French at the quickest rate. For students that are serious about achieving fluency and want a more comprehensive learning experience, Rocket French will almost certainly be worth the investment.
Babbel vs Rocket French
Babbel is a subscription-based language learning platform that offers a structured approach with lessons focused on real-life situations. While Babbel provides a solid foundation in vocabulary and grammar, its conversational practice opportunities are limited, which might hinder learners from developing strong speaking skills.
Rocket French also offers a structured approach but places a greater emphasis on conversational practice through its interactive audio lessons and “Play it!” feature. Additionally, Rocket French's voice recognition software, Rocket Record, helps learners fine-tune their pronunciation, an aspect that Babbel doesn't emphasize as much.
Essentially both Babbel and Rocket French provide structured learning experiences. However, if your primary goal is to develop strong conversational skills and improve your pronunciation, Rocket French has the edge.
By comparing Rocket French with Rosetta Stone, Duolingo, and Babbel, we can see that each platform offers a unique approach to language learning. Ultimately, the best choice depends on your learning preferences, goals, and budget. But Rocket French really stood out to me personally as a student looking to develop in a well-rounded form.
What others have said
I went to Reddit to see how some past students felt Rocket French impacted their learning experience.
“The "podcast" element involves a huge amount of repetition, which even at level 2 includes repeating "bonjour madame" multiple times when by now that should be a given, which can make the pace feel very slow. Their other recap tools are also good but it feels like once you have completed a module they never come back to the topic again so you aren't getting that spaced repetition.” - Reddit Rocket French review
As a veteran language learner, I understand why this student might feel this way.
But it's important to recognize the value of repetition in language learning and the need for patience. Repetition plays a crucial role in reinforcing new vocabulary, grammar, and pronunciation, helping learners solidify their knowledge and build a strong foundation. While it may sometimes feel slow or even frustrating, this approach ensures that learners fully grasp the material before moving on to more advanced topics.
“The best parts in my opinion is that it really goes into all of the basics and grammar, while teaching you conversational/tourist information at the same time. I hated how random [other online courses were]. I really need a basic foundation and…I feel that Rocket Language does that.” Reddit Rocket French review
I feel like a lot of online French courses have you start learning vocab and repeating phrases without explaining how the language is structured. While I think the Interactive Audio Lessons are great for developing your ear and your accent, I was most impressed with the Language & Culture lessons.
When I’m learning a new language, I need to understand the tools (grammar, sentence structure, syntax, etc) that I’m going to use to build the palace that is my proficiency in a foreign language. If someone is going to give you a bunch of power tools and say “Go buck wild!,” you’re probably not going to understand what you’re doing. Lots of online courses do this and call it “learning by immersion.”
That’s why I like Rocket French so much: it addresses this by offering both “immersion learning” in its Interactive Audio Lessons and the building blocks of the language in its Language & Culture Lessons.
Conclusion: Is Rocket French worth it?
It's time to reach a verdict. Is Rocket French worth your precious time and hard-earned cash?
You betcha! If you're committed to beefing up your French skills and ready for an exciting learning adventure, Rocket French is the ticket.
Rocket French is like a delicious croissant, stuffed with all the goodness you need to learn the language of love. You get a perfect mix of immersive Interactive Audio Lessons and informative Language & Culture Lessons, making sure you become a grammar guru, vocabulary virtuoso, and conversation champ.
Even better, they throw in survival phrases, personalized assessments, cool study aids, and a cozy community forum to make your learning experience a piece of cake.
Comparing Rocket French to other online French courses, I think Rocket French has an edge. While some courses only focus on vocab or grammar, Rocket French finds that sweet spot between essential language ingredients and real-life chit-chat. So, if you want to flâner le boulevard with confidence, Rocket French has got your back.
But hey, nobody's perfect, right? Some folks might find the pace of Rocket French a bit slower than they’d like. But patience is a virtue, dear reader — especially when you’re learning a foreign language. Learning a language takes time and dedication! .
When it comes down to the quality of the course, the features, and the bang for your buck, Rocket French is a unicorn in the language learning world. The overall experience is engaging, supportive, and tailored to help you reach your language goals.
When you add on the fact that the free trial and 60-day refund period make Rocket French essentially risk-free, it seems silly to hesitate.
So go ahead, give it a shot, and soon you'll be saying, “Oui, je parle français!“
Rocket French FAQs
Rocket French has a variety of pricing options. You’ll end up paying either a one-time cost for lifetime access in the ballpark of $100 – $250, depending on how many levels you buy. If you choose to pay month-to-month, you’re looking at about $50/month.
Rocket Languages’ French course helps you achieve conversational fluency in French by teaching you grammar and vocab while developing your listening comprehension with interactive audio lessons. There are tons of study resources, including Google-enhanced voice recognition software and flashcards, that help you round out your knowledge of French.
Just French! But Rocket Languages offers 11 other foreign language courses that you can buy at an additional cost.
Yes. If you buy the lifetime access one-time cost packages, you can request a refund within 60 days of purchase. If you buy the month-to-month subscription, you can only cancel your next payment.